Minor Thoughts from me to you

Who needs to give birth in a hospital?

It's great that Great Britain has high quality health care available to everyone, courtesy of the British government. Expectant mothers are especially appreciative. After all, without the NHS, some of them would have never known that it's possible to give birth outside of a delivery room.

Thousands of women are having to give birth outside maternity wards because of a lack of midwives and hospital beds.

The lives of mothers and babies are being put at risk as births in locations ranging from lifts to toilets - even a caravan - went up 15 per cent last year to almost 4,000.

Health chiefs admit a lack of maternity beds is partly to blame for the crisis, with hundreds of women in labour being turned away from hospitals because they are full.

Latest figures show that over the past two years there were at least:

  • 63 births in ambulances and 608 in transit to hospitals;
  • 117 births in A&E; departments, four in minor injury units and two in medical assessment areas;
  • 115 births on other hospital wards and 36 in other unspecified areas including corridors;
  • 399 in parts of maternity units other than labour beds, including postnatal and antenatal wards and reception areas.

Additionally, overstretched maternity units shut their doors to any more women in labour on 553 occasions last year.

I'm so glad that the British don't leave their health care up to a greedy, heartless private sector motivated only by profits. Imagine what might happen if they did!